When we give so much it hurts, we are not truly living. Yes, we may have breath, though we have no life. It seems counter-intuitive that the most effective way to receive is to give to ourselves first.
Unless we primarily give to ourselves what we want, then we cannot give that to others. Further, what we want that we cannot provide will be that much more difficult to receive. If we want to give love, we must love who we are in order to receive it. It is true that we cannot transmit that which we do not possess.